LAKEVILLE — Janine Edwards, Wayne County District Attorney, announced the arrest of Gerard C. Amato, age 18, of Lakeville, after an investigation was conducted by the Wayne County District Attorney’s Detectives and the Wayne County District Attorney’s Drug Task Force.

LAKEVILLE — Janine Edwards, Wayne County District Attorney, announced the arrest of Gerard C. Amato, age 18, of Lakeville, after an investigation was conducted by the Wayne County District Attorney’s Detectives and the Wayne County District Attorney’s Drug Task Force.

Edwards commented on the arrest by stating:

“This amount of marijuana, in so many different forms, and this amount of cash demonstrates a large enterprise of illegal activity.

“Taking out this drug dealer who was clearly peddling drugs disguised as candy to our community is a big win.

“Drug dealing of this magnitude can only lead to violence and threatens our safety.

“I am proud of the detectives in my office who worked on this investigation and thankful for the assistance of the Wayne County Sheriff’s Department.”

According to a release provided by the Wayne County District Attorney's Office:

Detectives became aware Amato and his roommate Andrew Zuidema, age 23, of Lakeville, were involved in the illegal sale of large amounts of marijuana throughout Wayne County.

Amato and Zuidema previously resided on Old State Road in Honesdale, Texas Township.

On February 13, 2017, an armed home invasion took place at their Old State Road residence, the release states.

A group of armed men entered the residence with the intention of robbing Amato and Zuidema of their drugs and large amounts of cash that were believed to be stored there.

Several subjects were subsequently arrested and charged with that crime.

Detectives learned after the home invasion, Amato and Zuidema moved to a residence located at 775 Purdytown Turnpike in Lakeville, Paupack Township.

The continuing investigation revealed Amato was frequently traveling out-of-state to purchase large amounts of marijuana in plant form and in edible, wax and oil form.

Amato would bring the marijuana back to Wayne County to sell.

On July 10, 2017 at approximately 1:44 p.m., Wayne County Detectives responded to Amato and Zuidema's residence to serve them with subpoenas to appear for the trial of one of the individuals that was involved in the home invasion.

Detectives found Zuidema sitting outside of the residence.

As soon as Zuidema approached the detectives, they smelled the odor of burnt marijuana emanating from him.

The detectives then all smelled the strong odor of raw marijuana coming from the interior of the residence.

A search warrant was obtained for the residence and was served by the detectives, who were assisted by deputies from the Wayne County Sheriff's Department.

The following items were seized:

• Approximately 7 pounds of marijuana in plant form valued at over $24,000;

• Approximately 289 grams of marijuana in wax form;

• 13 vape pen cartridges containing THC oil;

• 10 bottles of cannabis oil;

• 12 packets of marijuana infused candy;

• 21 packets of marijuana infused chocolate bars;

• Approximately 29 grams of "Molly" powder (MDMA);

• Approximately 15 grams of Dimethyltryptamine powder (DMT), a powerful hallucinogen;

• 13 Acetaminophen and Hydrocodone 325 mg / 10 mg pills;

• Approximately 20 doses of Lysergic Acid Diethylamide (LSD);

• Numerous items of drug paraphernalia;

• $7,055 in cash.

 

Amato was arrested and charged with four counts of Possession with Intent to Deliver Controlled Substances, all ungraded felonies.

He was also charged with four counts of Possession of a Controlled substance, all ungraded misdemeanors, and one count of Possession of Drug Paraphernalia, an ungraded misdemeanor.

He was arraigned by Magisterial Judge Edwards and was remanded to the Wayne County Correctional Facility on $100,000 bail.

He is scheduled to appear for Central Court on Wednesday, July 19, 2017 at 9:00 am.

Zuidema will be charged via summons with one count of Possession of Marijuana and one count of Possession of Drug Paraphernalia, both ungraded misdemeanors.